Skip to main content

Supply chain innovation

  • GRI
  • J&J23-6

    Digital innovation

Throughout our global operations and supply chain, we deploy the most advanced digital technologies to bring our products and treatments to patients to modernize healthcare and enable better health outcomes. Our numerous technology-driven innovations also advance sustainability by facilitating environmental efficiencies.

Leveraging technology and real-time data, our smart supply chain helps provide patients and customers with the right products at the right time, anywhere in the world. Examples of progress in 2023 include:

Supply chain resilience

In 2023, we improved end-to-end visibility into vulnerabilities across J&J’s critical product portfolio with the introduction of a Resilience Dashboard. In near real time, the Dashboard systematically and dynamically analyzes a multitude of risks across the value chain to uncover and elevate new risk insights that in isolation may not be seen, and then executes an optimal response. The Dashboard’s data allows J&J to elevate supply chain resilience into the strategic decision-making process and deliver confident, quantifiable decisions that reduce disruptions, drive growth and build trust with patients and customers. In 2023, the Dashboard was deployed across all critical products in our Innovative Medicine supply chain and is being continually improved to support resilience in new product introductions and products across all stages of their lifecycle.

Leading global supply chain technology

We are early adopters of the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) across our organization. 4IR means deploying digital technologies to make bigger and faster leaps forward in productivity, efficiency, sustainability and enhanced customer service. This approach is recognized by the World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Lighthouse Network that identifies leadership in 4IR technology deployment to transform factories, value chains and business models. In 2023, our Innovative Medicine plant in Xi’an, China, earned Lighthouse status twice: once for incorporating 4IR technologies into daily manufacturing and supply chain operation, and once for using 4IR to advance its sustainability efforts. Xi’an is the first pharmaceutical plant in China, and in all of Asia, to earn a Lighthouse designation.

Dapo Ajayi, Vice President, Innovative Medicine Supply Chain, Johnson & Johnson (photo)

We take great pride in embracing 4IR technologies across our entire supply chain, and Xi’an is the latest example of how we’re leading the way on the manufacturing and sustainability fronts.”

Dapo Ajayi, Vice President, Innovative Medicine Supply Chain, Johnson & Johnson

Smart technologies deployed at Xi’an have enabled increased productivity by 40%, reduced product non-conformance rates by 60% and operating costs by 24%, and contributed to a reduction in GHG emissions by 26% in the last 3 years.

Personalizing the CAR-T supply chain

Innovative Medicine’s CAR-T therapy, CARVYKTI (ciltacabtagene autoleucel) requires a new manufacturing and delivery model—a “personalized supply chain”—to reach patients with multiple myeloma cancer. The therapy involves collecting a patient’s T-cells at a treatment site, transporting the cells to a lab, modifying the T-cells to recognize and target the cancer, transporting the cells to a treatment site (hospital), and re-infusing the modified cells back into the patient to attack the cancer cells. To support the availability of this new drug, we developed a digital ecosystem that provides an end-to-end, vein-to-vein, well-orchestrated and error-free process. A key element in this digital ecosystem is our proprietary CQUENCE Chain of Identity/Chain of Custody electronic platform that ensures the personalized product is linked to the correct patient throughout the treatment cycle and accurately records every point of transfer and control from patient selection to therapy administration. Ensuring a seamless and secure journey for this cutting-edge CAR-T therapy—from inception to patient administration—is paramount to making it accessible to patients who need it.

Reducing testing and release time

We continuously pursue ways to enhance reliability, agility and flexibility across our supply chain to meet the evolving needs of our patients and customers. An example of innovation in this area is Real-time Release (RTR), that works by determining the quality of a product immediately following tablet compression, using a combination of real-time data on raw material and process attributes and Process Analytical Technology (PAT) sensors. RTR data enable product quality assurance and consistency across production runs, while also delivering a reduction in overall manufacturing cycle time of up to 40%, as well as shortening testing and the release time of a product from weeks to days. A further benefit of using RTR, in addition to consistent quality and faster availability of products for patients, is an improvement in our environmental impacts, reducing the waste associated with manually testing our products and the associated GHG emissions. We currently employ RTR on several of our drug products and look to expand the use of RTR for new products.

Connecting the MedTech supply chain

In 2023, we introduced the J&J SupplierHub as a digital front door for the suppliers supporting MedTech. The SupplierHub provides a centralized platform for communication between J&J MedTech and its suppliers, designed to enable a digital collaboration strategy to better manage our growing supplier network, centralize information, reduce process time, improve reliability and strengthen supplier partnerships. A key advantage of the SupplierHub is the visibility it creates across the supply chain, leading to increased predictability of potential supply challenges and enabling reduced supply lead-time variability.

New state-of-the-art MedTech facility

J&J MedTech finalized plans to build a new facility in Alajuela, Costa Rica, that will have flexibility to manufacture products from across our MedTech portfolio. MedTech Costa Rica will be our most advanced manufacturing site, including integrating a flexible cleanroom with the ability to reconfigure the equipment resulting in less downtime, thereby boosting our capacity to support customer and patient demand.

Greenhouse gas or gases